Today, President Obama called on Congress to pass a short-term package of spending cuts and new tax increases to delay the across-the-board spending cuts, known as the "sequester". The previous fiscal cliff deal delayed the sequester until March 1, but the president requested this deadline be delayed once again on Tuesday afternoon. Congresswoman Jenkins released the following statement in response to the president's request:
"Across-the-board cuts are not an ideal way to reduce spending. That is why I supported two different bills to replace the sequester with more thoughtful spending reductions. It is time for the Senate to consider the plans already on the table. Short-term budget gimmicks are not a solution.
"The sequester was the president's idea. He insisted these spending cuts, both defense and non-defense, be a part of the debt-limit deal in 2011. Congress agreed, and the president signed the bill defining the sequester as a dollar-for-dollar consequence if the Supercommittee failed to identify adequate spending cuts. Tax hikes were never a part of the equation when the president sold the bill to the American people or any of the rest of us. Going back on those promises and displacing already agreed-upon spending cuts with additional tax increases should be considered a disingenuous attempt to mislead the American public.
"I do not like the specific cuts in the sequester, but I am not about to break my word to see promised spending cuts or reforms become a reality. I encourage the president to work with Congress on a long-term budget plan and shift his focus from raising revenue to creating economic growth and jobs. It is time to get serious and start putting the American people first, not politics."
Note: The House previously passed H.R. 5652, Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act and H.R. 6365, National Security and Job Protection Act to replace the sequester.